Sky Bet League One and Sky Bet League Two take centre stage this weekend and there’s plenty to look forward to. Here are five things to keep an eye out for…
The weekend gets underway with a live televised Sky Bet League One showdown on Sky Sports between Portsmouth and Derby County. Pompey entertain the Rams at Fratton Park in what is poised to be a close call, as fifth takes on sixth.
The two promotion pushing teams are tied 28 points, with the hosts coming into the fixture on the back of a 1-1 draw with Morecambe last weekend. Derby, on the other hand, saw off Milton Keynes Dons 3-1 last time out in the league.
The fixture will be followed by Exeter City's home clash against Ipswich Town on Saturday with a midday kick-off on Sky Sports.
Top four clash
There’s a top-of-the-table clash coming up as Bradford City host Northampton Town at Valley Parade in Sky Bet League Two.
Bantams striker Andy Cook and Cobblers attacker Sam Hoskins have flown out of the blocks this season, with the pair topping the overall EFL scoring charts on 12 and 13 strikes respectively. However, Hoskins will be forced to miss out through suspension.
Bradford are unbeaten in their last six, with Mark Hughes’ men looking for a third victory in succession, while Northampton secured maximum points against Gillingham on the road last weekend.
Forest Green Rovers are hoping to get back to winning ways when they pay a visit to Oxford United, and the man who could fire them up the table joined the Official EFL Podcast this week as Connor Wickham talked injury woes, joining the Gloucestershire team and rediscovering his love for the game.
“I’ve signed at Forest Green and it is a challenge obviously because they’ve come up and lost a few of their players at the start of the season,” he explained.
“I’m enjoying playing football and I’m back playing football week-in and week-out. It feels like I’m starting to get back to my old self that’s playing Saturday and Tuesday and scoring goals. My name’s getting back in people’s mouths which is a good thing. Playing football is the most important thing to me and I’ve got that love back for the game.”
Doncaster Rovers featured heavily in last weekend's League Two Team of the Week as manager Danny Schofield headed up the line-up, whilst nine-goal striker George Miller, Harrison Biggins - who also found the back of the net against Grimsby Town in a 3-1 victory - and Kyle Knoyle were included in the side.
📋It’s time for the #SkyBetLeagueTwo Team of the Week!— Sky Bet League Two (@SkyBetLeagueTwo) November 14, 2022
📈 Powered by @WhoScored ratings. #EFL | @CazooUK pic.twitter.com/CiuigS0SLK
The South Yorkshire side are looking to make it three consecutive wins when they take on Colchester United. Rovers, who occupy 10th place, are now just two points off the top seven. The U's, on the other hand, are without a win in six and Schofield's men could take advantage of that.
Standout youngster eyeing more
The latest recipient of the EFL’s Young Player of the Month prize, Exeter City’s Jay Stansfield, who was awarded the accolade earlier in the week, will be looking to build on an impressive display in October when the Grecians take on Ipswich Town this weekend.
The forward opened his account for the Club last month, notching four goals in seven league appearances, and the Fulham loanee spoke about his “rollercoaster” start to life in Devon.
October's EFL Young Player of the Month: Jay Stansfield 💫— EFL (@EFL) November 16, 2022
In an exclusive interview, the @OfficialECFC striker discusses returning to #ECFC, the privilege of taking the No.9 shirt and the season so far. #EFL | @SkyBetLeagueOne
“Goals give forwards confidence and I've got a few now,” he said. “But it’s not luck either, it’s come through hard work. I've been working on my link up play with the other forwards in the team and I’ve contributed four assists as well, which is a different part of the game I wanted to work on.”